Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Soya - Soya Dance : A war dance with awesome motions

Soya-soya dance isn't only part of the culture of sultanate of Ternate but also a historical reflection about the struggle of Kayoa people, in South Halmahera regency. The dance already exists around hundreds year ago where it was heroic dance to greet the army after combat on battlefield. Word of "soya-soya" itself means "semangat pantang" in Indonesian or "morale" in English.

Soya-soya dance is part of North Maluku culture. Children in this region during childhood have been taught about this dance, even it spread around the villages. In fact, this dance is also taught back in elementary school.

The historical note of Ternate people states that in 1570 until 1583, Sultan Babullah and his army invaded fortress of Nostra Senora del Rosario (fortress Kastela), in the south end of Ternate. This invasion aims to took  corpse of Sultan Babullah's father, named Sultan Khairun which was killed cruelly by Portuguese army. This battle was a sign of the rise of the struggle of Kayoa people against colonialist by besieging that fortress for 5 years in the end of 16th century.

Soya-soya dance created during the reign of Sultan Babullah (The 24th Sultan of Ternate), from the sultanate of Ternate , to rekindle the spirit his army after the death of Sultan Khairun  on february 25, 1570. At the time, dance of soya-soya was interpreted as a liberation war from Portuguese until its downfall in 1575. At the next era, The sultanate of Ternate became the ruler of 72 inhabited islands in the east territory of Nusantara even south Mindanao in Philippines and Marshall islands in the southwest pacific.

Costume that usually used in this dance uses white colour and long fabrics which similar to colorful skirt (Red, Black, Yellow, and Green). Every dancers will put on the yellow headband (named : taqoa) where it's a symbol of soldier. Equipments that is usually brought are sword (ngana-ngana) made from bamboo decorated by red or green or yellow palm leaf (woka), also equipped with corn kernels inside. In addition, the dancers also bring shield (salawaku). Musical instruments for the dance are drum (tifa), gong (saragai), small "gono" (tawa-tawa). The dancers will show lively dance where it reflect attack and parry motions. The number of soya-soya dancer itself isn't specific (random). The dance usually danced by 4 until thousands dancers.

On April 2011, in Legu Gam 2011, held Festival of Soya-soya for 30 minutes. The dance is danced by 8.125 dancers and it make an achievment in Museum Rekor Dunia Indonesia (MURI) (Indonesian World Record Musem)

Soya-soya dance today is only be displayed to greet guest of honor or sultanate. Government of Ternate declare the dance as tourism attraction that can be enjoyed by the tourists while they come to Ternate. Also you can enjoy this dance in cultural festival at Ternate like Legu Gam.

Here a video about Soya - soya dance. Enjoy it :D

Come and visit Ternate now !! More happiness & more experience :D

Taken from : Wonderful Indonesia


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